"1200 calories, maximum allowed per day". Does this sound familiar to you? Growing up as a girl in the usual fashion I definitely have always felt that my body type didn't measure up. There was always someone with a completely different body type I would have preferred to my own. I went to great lengths to try to achieve this, but you are what you are. No matter how much I would have wished to be taller and slimmer, with a longer torso, perhaps, or a slimmer waist, no amount of "dieting" or exercise could have gotten me there.
For a short time in high school I almost developed an eating disorder. My mom enrolled me in Weight Watchers after she found out I was limiting myself to a diet coke and a banana while I was at school. I don't know that WW is for everyone, but it did open my eyes to a lot of things, one of them the right way to watch calories...quality over quantity, and watching your quantities of even nutritious foods. I don't remember exercise playing a role in weight loss lessons back in my WW days, but it has been more than 25 years since I attended.
So, enough of my history. Let's talk about basal metabolic rate, or BMR. In short, this number is the measurement of how many calories your body requires just to stay alive. To blink, breathe, etc. If you were in a coma, you'd still need these calories. It's a different number for everyone, and it changes with your changes. Get taller, gain weight, lose weight, shrink in height, age, etc- your number will always change.
Here is an excellent page on determining your BMR. The thing to remember, is, you need more calories than your BMR gives you. Remember, that's just what you need for basic survival. Once you add in living, no matter that you're considered sedentary or otherwise, you need more energy to fuel your life.
Follow this link for "Daily Calorie Needs" to continue on to a calculation for how many calories you should actually be consuming. If you're anything like me, it's going to take a while to allow yourself to eat that many calories.
What are your thoughts on this? Are you surprised by the number you were given? I know I was.
THIS beautiful thing was dinner tonight, half of a 2-part cook-ahead meal plan for this week. Stay tuned for details! When I've completed my meal with the second half of the meat I will post recipes and pictures.
The very best moment during dinner tonight is that my picky second son, even while balking at a first taste, came back to eat the rest of his first slider, and asked if he could take the second one to school for snack tomorrow. Victory!
Someone posted this photo to facebook this week. I can't believe that pop used to be marketed for young children! I do love the ad style though, just not the content!
Does anyone find it difficult to eyeball a meal and figure out how many servings of food you're actually consuming? I find it easy at home, when we've got a food scale and measuring tools handy. When eating out, however, it becomes more complicated.
My Lifestyle and Nutrition course linked to a portion sizes document that has some interesting ways to figure out how much you're eating- for example, one serving of peanut butter (2 tbsp) is equal to an amount the size of a golf ball. Helpful? Yes! Let me know if you've got some helpful hints to share!
I started a second course this week (through Coursera) that's titled Lifestyle and Nutrition. One of the lectures included an interview and slideshow from Peter Menzel titled "Hungry Planet". This photographer and his wife traveled to several different countries and photographed families with a week's worth of food. It was really interesting to see the different kinds of foods people eat in different parts of the world, and to hear about the families that were photographed.
I thought it might be interesting if I took a collection of photos of the foods we eat each day for a week, and then look at them a year from now to see how things have changed. What do you think would change from year to year for you? What did you think of the slideshow I linked to?
My thanks to Calleigh for the plastic fruit, vegetables, bread, and eggs on my balanced meal plate! They were very helpful!
I've got the Mr. Rogers theme song in my head, can you tell? Just changed it up a bit. Not that the original needed changing, this is just my day today.
So, it's a leftover night for dinner tonight. We've enjoyed some fantastic meals this week, from wine-braised bison with saskatoons to rotisserie chicken. It's a busy day for us...sport in the morning, sport at noon, sport after school, and after-dinner dance! Not much time in between for prepping anything outstanding, and so with all our leftover dinners we'll have a yummy kale salad kit I bought yesterday, rounding it out with some pita or wraps.
I hope you enjoy your beautiful day in the neighborhood today! What are you having for dinner?
Joan Plamondon, you won the 2-week complete meal plan package, and Chantel Roskewich you won my kitchen gadget basket! Congratulations! I will be giving you a call tomorrow to make arrangements.
The Home Base trade show this weekend in Fort Saskatchewan was fun. I enjoyed meeting all of you that stopped by and I hope I was able to answer your questions.
Today is the second and last day of our local trade show. If you live in the Fort Saskatchewan area- like Edmonton, Sherwood Park, Gibbons, Lamont, Ardrossan, etc- please come by and say hello!
It's located at the Lakeview Inn, which is just off of highway 21 right next to the A&W.
I spent my morning prepping dinner for tonight and lunch for today. I'm looking forward to walking into a house that will smell amazing by the end of the day.
If you're looking for meal ideas for today, here's what my day in meals looks like:
Breakfast: Oatmeal with Pears, Plums, Pecans, and Nutmeg
Snack: Chocolate Shakeology
Lunch: Bruschetta-Inspired Romaine Salad, Egg Salad sandwich on a whole wheat bun
Snack: Tamari Almonds
Dinner: Stir-fried peppers, zucchini, and carrots with modified Crockpot Applesauce BBQ chicken and rice
I have to admit this was a different way of meal planning for me, but as suggested in the childhood nutrition course I'm taking, I wanted to make the effort.
Last night I decided to begin with what vegetables I wanted to use up by serving them for dinner, then picked a protein and carbohydrate that would go well together. The resulting meal was tasty, very high in vegetables, and very filling.
Tzatziki was the first part of our meal. I had plain Greek yogurt and a couple of garden cucumbers to use up.
Sauteed Spinach followed- it was a lot of spinach when I started, but cooked down to about a cup in total. I cooked it in a tbsp of extra virgin olive oil, with 2 garlic cloves, and some lemon zest, salt, and pepper sprinkled on just before serving.
After seeing how far the spinach cooked down, I added some carrots and snap peas to the steamer, and sliced up a head of lettuce into thin strips.
I also cut up an apple into pieces for my sons to share.
Then I started on my chicken. Marinaded in souvlaki seasoning with lemon juice and olive oil, sliced into strips, and cooked in my non-stick pan.
All this was served with a whole wheat tortilla. First, spread the tzatziki across the tortilla, and sprinkle with lettuce. Add the chicken, roll up, and enjoy. A benefit to using tzatziki in the wrap was it "glued" the tortilla together so it didn't really fall apart. The steamed veges and spinach were on the side.
Did my family enjoy this? Well, my first son liked all the components separately, as usual. He tasted the spinach, but prefers fresh, uncooked over this. And that's ok! The tzatziki didn't go over well with him, although my husband enjoyed it. My youngest enjoyed his fruit and wrap. He was willing to taste the chicken, which is at least getting the flavours and texture in his mouth, even if it wasn't his favorite.
Both boys have been sick, so both boys weren't overly interested in eating dinner, and that's ok too. I don't want to make dinner a forced event in any way. My personal feeling on the matter is that we provide the food, and hopefully they'll eventually eat things they won't touch at this time.
Have you tried to plan a meal around the vegetable and fruit portion? How did that go for you? What did you serve?